Manchester United are reportedly still keeping a close eye on Jan Oblak, as they brace themselves for life without David de Gea next season.
According to an exclusive report from 90 min, Manchester United are readying themselves for a major shift in their goalkeeping department. The club is braced to lose David de Gea in the summer, and amid doubts over the credibility of Dean Henderson, it appears they have retained their interest in Jan Oblak.
The Atletico Madrid goalkeeper has been linked with a move to Old Trafford for years now, as the desired replacement for de Gea at Manchester United. The Slovenian international is widely considered as one of the top three goalkeepers in world football, thanks to his consistent and high-level performances in La Liga over the years.
Since joining from SL Benfica in 2014, Oblak has notched up almost 300 competitive appearances for Atletico Madrid. During this time, he has kept a whopping 155 clean sheets – becoming the last line of defence in Diego Simeone’s solid and aggressive tactical philosophy in the Spanish capital.
The 28-year-old’s experience and contributions at Atleti, therefore, have made him one of Manchester United’s desired targets. It is apparent that he is more than qualified to replace someone like de Gea at Old Trafford, as the Red Devils look to further solidify their defensive unit that will go a long way in helping them emerge as the top competitor for Manchester City next season.
Ole Gunnar Solskjaer, though, has a real dilemma in his hands as the current option in Dean Henderson is no slouch and is regarded as one of the best goalkeepers in England. The young shot-stopper may not boast much experience, but he has certainly shown what he is capable of, during his time at Sheffield United last season.
While Oblak is, no doubt, a far more experienced and cultured option to have, the current financial climate could make things difficult for Manchester United, knowing the Atletico Madrid goalkeeper will demand a significant paycheck and will come for a hefty transfer fee as well.
It is also important to consider the difficulties the club might face in offloading David de Gea, who is already the highest-paid goalkeeper in the world. There is a chance that Paris Saint-Germain might be able to afford the Spaniard, but they too are unlikely to splash the cash this summer, leaving a direct swap with Atletico Madrid as the only option.
Spanish international de Gea has played for Los Colchoneros in the past and would reportedly love to return to his homeland following the birth of his child last month. But, given his hefty paycheck, Manchester United may have to subsidise parts of his wages in addition to paying Oblak.
It is perhaps not the most viable option for the Red Devils at the moment, as the club should definitely look to invest in centre-backs rather than goalkeepers, especially when Henderson is more than capable of taking on the mantle of replacing de Gea next season.